Leaning against a wall during a recent Birmingham, Alabama, public hearing, Bryant listened to an overflow crowd pepper federal officials with concerns about businesses polluting the drinking water and causing cases of cancer.After two hours, Bryant—a coal mine owner from Jasper—had heard enough and, in a moment being described as “right out of Atlas Shrugged,” took his turn at the microphone:
“Nearly every day without fail…men stream to these [mining] operations looking for work in Walker County. They can’t pay their mortgage. They can’t pay their car notes. They can’t feed their families. They don’t have health insurance. And as I stand here today, I just…you know…what’s the use? I got a permit to open up an underground coal mine that would employ probably 125 people. They’d be paid wages from $50,000 to $150,000 a year. We would consume probably $50 million to $60 million in consumables a year, putting more men to work. And my only idea today is to go home. What’s the use? I see these guys—I see them with tears in their eyes—looking for work. And if there’s so much opposition to these guys making a living, I feel like there’s no need in me putting out the effort to provide work for them. So…basically what I’ve decided is not to open the mine. I’m just quitting. Thank you.”
(*) - O romance mais famoso de Ayn Rand, escrito em 1957, embora eu, em particular, prefira "The Fountainhead". Tanto quanto julgo saber, o livro não foi ainda traduzido para português europeu embora tenha saído, não há muito tempo, uma tradução em português do Brasil sob o título "A Revolta de Atlas". Este foi também o títlulo adoptado numa tradução francesa recente (2009) que está disponível, de borla, aqui (link lento). Note-se que o livro não está a ser comercializado na amazon.fr, o que terá, certamente, o seu significado para a França bonapartista que bem conhecemos.